• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Ligustrum ovalifolium

California privet

  • Other common names California privet
    garden privet

    oval-leaved privet
    oval-leaf privet

    see more
  • Family Oleaceae

  • Genus Ligustrum can be decidous or evergreen shrubs or small trees, with simple, entire leaves and panicles of small, often unpleasantly scented white flowers in spring or summer, followed by black or deep purple berries

  • Details Ligustrum ovalifolium is a vigorous, upright glossy green ,oval-leaved bushy shrub. It is commonly used as 'privet' hedging, but left unpruned becomes a shaggy tree. Small white fragrant flowers in pointed clusters appear between June and July, which are highly attractive to bees. Round black berry fruits are borne in autumn.

  • Plant range Japan


  • Foliage Semi-evergreen

  • Habit Bushy

  • Fragrance Flower

  • Toxicity Somewhat poisonous if ingested. Wear gloves and other protective equipment and wash hands after handling

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)




  • Full Sun

  • Aspect North-facing or South-facing or East-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Exposed or Sheltered


  • Chalk


  • Clay


  • Loam


  • Sand


  • MoistureMoist but well-drained, Well-drained

  • SoilChalk, Clay, Loam, Sand

  • pHAcid, Alkaline, Neutral


  • Ultimate height 4-8 metres

  • Ultimate spread 2.5-4 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 10-20 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in any well-drained, or moist but well-drained soil in sun or partial shade

Propagation Propagate by hardwood cuttings, semi-hardwood cuttings or by seed

Suggested planting locations and garden types Hedging & Screens Wall-side Borders Architectural City & Courtyard Gardens Cottage & Informal Garden Patio & Container Plants

How to care

Pruning Pruning group 1. If grown as a hedge, pruning group 3. Pruning suppresses flowering. Prune two or three times during growing season. Cease pruning in late summer avoid frost damage on new growth

Pests May be susceptible to aphids, leaf mining moths and thrips

Diseases May be susceptible to honey fungus

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